A little social network filled with folks even my mom would love.
“I continue to love what you’re doing. Great ideas.”
“The best lunch date of my life. We were there for two and a half hours, but could easily have stayed for five.”
“Having great people in your life makes life great.”
My mom first told me that when I was seven. She was right. But it’s difficult these days to control who we’re surrounded by. The Internet seems to forceably decide that on our behalf.
A few years ago, I started to work on helping friends get away from all the Twitter hot-heads, Facebook marketers, Meetup weirdos, eBay scammers, LinkedIn recruiters, Craigslist criminals, Instagram egoists, Youtube trolls, and Match.com lotharios and spend more time with people that nurture and uplift them.
It’s turned into a private social network filled with the kind of people my mom surrounded my sister, Mia, and me with, as we were growing up. They’re warm-hearted, unselfconscious, intellectually curious, sane folks you’re not surprised spend a lot of time laughing, learning, trading, collaborating, and volunteering together. I call them – and this project to gather them – Sugarmaples.
You can get a feel for the tenor of the project through this little film, which tells the story of Meddle, the Sugarmaples problem-solving conference.
“If an eagle and a tiger had a human baby that was then raised by ninjas, it would be Ted.”
“Ted is extraordinary at what he does, and he’s a man of his word.”
“It was a wonderful time and a really great meal.”
“I had a very enjoyable lunch with Seth [Godin] yesterday — a smart and likable guy. There are degrees of kindredness (as well as of heresy). But we do seem to share a fair amount. Thanks for matching us.”
“It was such a great experience that I’m wracking my brain for other problems in my business that Ted could solve with a thoughtful connection.”
“I wanted to thank you again for the past weekend’s amazing fun and incredible opportunity to have an exchange of notions with Anil [Dash]. I feel even richer for the ideas & starting-places that have come out of the whole thing!”
“You know how it seems like everyone has a personal trainer, now? I believe Ted is the progenitor of a new kind of empathy-based collective problem solving that everyone will take for granted some day.”
“Sugarmaples is a collection of passionate, ambitious, big-hearted visionaries, and Ted is the Master Cultivator.”
“I have to say, you are very good at what you do. The timing was perfect and with one introduction you’ve enabled a ton of fruitful connections (which in the long run, might actually help save lives) in the span of a few days.”
Frequently asked questions.
Sugarmaples is 'invite-only'?
Yes. But we have frequent ‘open-house’ events for potential invitees. To attend one of these, fill out the form at the bottom of this page.
How do you pick out the members?
As silly as this might sound, I pick out the members based on whether I think my mom would like them. She had an exquisite eye for people.
What does membership cost?
Nothing right now. Down the road, there will be a monthly fee. However, anyone who becomes a member before the fee is instituted will be grandfathered in and never have to pay a cent.
Where did the name 'Sugarmaples' come from?
My mom’s biggest gathering of Sugarmaples was her annual Thanksgiving at Aunt Mickey’s. Every year during that celebration the streets around the house were dotted with piles of sugar maple leaves, just begging to be jumped into.
Can I suggest someone who'd get a kick out of being a part of this?
Absolutely. I’d love that. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who did the trees illustration?
Who made the video?
Who did the stop-motion animation for the video?
Who did the music for the video?
What platform is the online part of Sugarmaples built on?
Will you share or sell my data?
Is this advertising-supported?
No. There’s no advertising of any kind.
Who designed the Meddle logo?
My name is Ted Pearlman. I’m married to Allison, an architect. We have a ridiculous second-grader, Oscar, and an enormous Newfoundland, Tatou, who’s famous on the Internet. I’m a Cornell alum and tech industry (Sony / IBM / Roguewave / CQG) refugee. My other passion project is Fall: In Love with Music, a new kind of venue I’m developing for Denver.